The girls of the William S. Hart 10U Gold Softball team earned a chance to further their quest for a national championship with a 4-2 win over Charter Oak this weekend.
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The win came on the heels of a 15-hour marathon of eight games for the 12-member squad that fought back from a tough loss to finish the Lancaster tournament Sunday with a 7-1 record.
Their performance was good enough to qualify the team for the Western Nationals in Peoria, Ariz., from Aug. 1-4.
“The entire team contributed in all capacities this weekend, from hitting, to pitching, to fielding and it was an amazing effort hands down,”said team manager Lance Gibson. “I couldn’t be more proud of all of these young ladies.”
After three days of nearly triple-digit heat, the team won its first four games before falling to Charter Oak in the semifinals.
However, after a 7-6 win over Rancho Trabuco in the losers bracket, they set up a rematch with Charter Oak in the finals.
With McKenna Gibson on the mound and a motivated team behind her, Hart came out swinging and beat Charter Oak in the first championship game 6-3 to force the “if” game, Gibson said.
It was now up to Libbie McMahan to pitch Hart to the championship.
After a solid outing and an extremely gritty performance by the entire team, Hart overcame a 2-0 deficit and came back to win the state championship, Gibson said.
Gibson described the squad as 12 “very tough, yet sweet young ladies.” The roster includes: Emma Montoya, Emma Jacobs, Juliette Owen, Emma Bramson, Austen Hermanson, Aubrey McKessy, Aly Kaneshiro, Libbie McMahan, Gracie Keene, McKenna Gibson, Madison Mendez and Dallas Andrews.
The win puts the Hart team’s record to 30-9 for the summer, and sets up a shot at a championship run, and the team appreciates any help and support the community can offer, Gibson said.
“The trip itself is a very expensive one for the team to take on,” he said. “We are hoping that there are many people out there in the wonderful Santa Clarita Valley and beyond who might want to get behind these young ladies’ dreams of winning a national title.”
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